OTTAWA — Canadian digital security specialist BlackBerry Ltd. is offering a free security management service to autonomous-vehicle pilot projects to allow cars and infrastructure to exchange information "in a trustworthy and private manner."
The company from Waterloo, Ont., said Monday the software will work with AVs and "smart cities.”
It will start by debuting the software at a 16-kilometre test course in Ottawa. The first application will be at a closed course at a former agriculture research station in the Ottawa Greenbelt that is being turned into a miniature city with pavement markings, traffic lights, stop signs and pedestrian crosswalks.
Protection from hackers is a key concern in autonomous transportation.
"Vehicles need to be able to securely communicate with other vehicles, infrastructure and a plethora of other devices," Jim Alfred, head of BlackBerry's Certicom product group, told a news conference Monday.
BlackBerry said it will not charge service fees for automakers and public offices involved in smart city and connected vehicle pilots to use the new Security Credential Management System service.
BlackBerry says it expects to eventually earn fees for installing software in vehicles and other devices and for managing the security certificates that are at the heart of the service.
"Effectively we're seeding the market for our technology," Alfred said.